Sunday, 15 September 2013


no, not books this time (it's getting closer to christmas, but not that close!)... our group, the Connacht Textile Crafters, went on a trip last tuesday - guess where:
we saw this: 

 ...and just around the corner there was this:
of course we saw other things, too:) I did take some more telling pictures, but I'll show those later.
as much as I love eating - when I do so in a bistro or restaurant, I never remember to take photos (too greedy, I suppose:). which I should have on tuesday, because we had some lovely food. all I can show you is a photo of something we had a few days ago:
hm, blackberry crumble. some of our fruit trees look empty - and not because I picked everything! strawberries were pretty good, but raspberries are next to non-existant (only the yellow variety has produced some, but not a lot). but blackberries? I don't think I've had a year that good since I came! they are big, ripe and very tasty - or at least they have been until yesterday. we had a lot of rain last night and strong gales - so maybe the overripe ones have dropped already. I spent my evening walking up our road and picking - 4.5 kg of blackberries. a small amount will go into a blackberry almond pie today, but most of them will end up in my steam juicer later. I am not terribly fond of blackberry jam, because I don't like the seeds so much. but I do like blackberry jelly, yum! I only make a small amount immediately and finish the rest from juice bit by bit. which of course means that we could still use it in another way - e.g. hot blackberry juice with a bit of lemon, a drop of rum and hot water - like a "grog", but fruity! or blended with brandy, very tasty (with a bit of brown sugar). if the wind calms down a bit I might go for another browse, but we'll see..... most of the time over the year I curse the overgrown road - but at this time I love it, because I only have to step out the front door to go picking:)
of course I've done other things - textile stuff. I had planned to use a bit of my sockwool remnants for hexipuffs. but a friend of mine steadfastly refuses to learn knitting in the round (she claims she can't do it...) and when I found the same project in crochet in ravelry I thought I'd give it a try.
it's simple, just sc (or dc in uk) in the round. a few increases, later a few decreases, that's it. but to be honest - I'd rather do it in knitting:) she can have the pattern!            
and yes, I have done quite a lot of knitting and spinning, too. some of it was the dyed yarns and fibres from my last entries. I also started a moebius on the bus trip - but decided I don't like it too much, so I ripped it yesterday morning - to start a different pattern with the same yarn. and I brought something from our trip - see next entry:)
in the garden I've been collecting seeds. nero di toscana kale, some dahlia sp. and quite a lot of seeds from the purple lupin I bought in june. this plant was a brilliant buy - 4 euros for a big plant that has been producing gorgeous flower stalks non-stop from the day I bought it! plus lots of seeds on the side... I wanted to try dyeing with lupins, and hope that the strong purple will yield colour as well. but for this I have to grow a few more than just my parent plant! if anybody wants lupin seeds - beep (or my garden will grow nothing else next year:).
I do find the pods quite interesting (and wish I had a better camera for this!)
each seed had a "room" of its own plus a nice cozy lining to keep it safe. and when the pod is ripe it magically splits open and shakes its inhabitants out of their cozy apartments.... but I won't leave it to chance, I collected all the seed pods so far, and will only leave the last stalk to try self-seeding, too.
 and now I am off to dig out the steamer - the blackberries are so juicy that I can't leave them for more than a few hours before using them!


Nina said...

Yum Blackberries! We had a few this year but it seemed that they went from unripe to overripe in mere moments. Lucky that you can pick them wild. I've had to plant them in my garden and can only find the plants once every few years so growing enough to pick for more than a taste is taking a while
Lupins are beautiful. I hope they produce wonderful colour.

Delighted Hands said...

Fun post! I like the first two pics but need to know what they are!!! Glad you had a good tour!

edith said...

Oh so viele Reservespulen. Bin schon auf die Bilder der gefüllten gespannt.
Alles Liebe

Woolly Bits said...

Nina yes, it's very practical to have them outside. we eradicated them in the garden though! the long shoots hang to the ground, form new roots - and leave "lovely" traps/loops everywhere... plenty in the wild anyway, no use planting any:) but I think you beat me hands on with tomatoes/cucumbers:)
Cindy - I try my best to solve the riddle - soon:)
Edith - da liegst du nicht falsch - ich koennte ein paar der gefuellten gut brauchen:)

Elke said...

Schön, wie du die Samenkapseln der Lupinen beschrieben hast. Sie sehen ein bisschen so aus wie die von der Staudenwicke, aber da gibt es nicht diese Separés!

Leigh said...

Hmm, pipes? Very intriguing first photos!

I have to agree about blackberry jam and jelly. Same with raspberry!

Woolly Bits said...

Elke - das ist ein bisschen wie mit dicken bohnen, die so ein schoenes, kuschliges bett in ihrer schote haben - memory effect, wenn die bohne raus ist, sieht man noch, wo sie so lange "gewohnt" hat:)
Leigh - I wish I had the seed problem with raspberries - not much to pick this year, and I have no idea, why they nearly failed, while the blackberries are threatening to take over the island!